Day 6 – New Year’s Eve

Today is December 31, 2016, hours away from the new year.

01 ancop
We first visit the ANCOP head office to learn more about our amazing charity partner

Here’s a summary:

  • 6989 – number of sponsored children to date
  • 550 – college graduates to date
  • 300 – number of sponsored children that have graduated with honors (shows that all kids can excel if given the opportunity)
  • 75% – passing grade in the Philippines
  • 78% – grade needed to continue to receive ANCOP sponsorship (to ensure funds are going to a student who is putting in the necessary effort to succeed
  • $38 – monthly contribution to sponsor a child
02 fort
This picture is taken in front of Fort Santiago where national hero Jose Rizal was incarcerated by the Spaniards for starting an uprising to fight for Philippine independance.
03 head
We walk around the grounds and take some pictures

04 priest05 monkey bars06 Streetcar

07 mango
Michael and Seph try to pick mangos with this long piece of bamboo with a net tied to the end of it


08 church
Right across the street from Fort Santigao is this beautiful church. We all go inside to give a prayer of gratitude and positivity for 2016.
09 fierce
We go back to the hotel and put on some fancy attire before we head to the mall of Asia to see fireworks.
10 cross street
Before leaving, a group of us bring some left over food some homeless families who have taken shelter across the street
11 Ferris
We all ride the ferris wheel. From the top you can see all the people that have travelled far and near to celebrate NYE.
12 Million
It’s estimated one million people come to see the Mall of Asia firework show for NYE every year.

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18 flag
Follow the flag! Easy way not to get lost amongst the crowd.

Happy New Year’s everyone. Here’s to an amazing 2016.

Thanks for following our travels.

Tomorrow we go the mountain region of San Mateo to help with the construction of a new road.

Feel free to leave a comment below.

25 thoughts on “Day 6 – New Year’s Eve

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  1. Today we went to ANCOP head office. We got a lot of back ground information about that builds in the past and the build we will be doing by this year. It was interesting to hear about all the amazing things that ANCOP has done for so many families and what they are doing to continue this amazing movement. After we did some touristy things. We went to Fort where we learned a bit about the history of the Philippines during world war 2. After that we went to the market where we had lunch and got to do more shopping. Then it started raining! Mike had told us that it hadn’t rained in December for 5 years and now it is raining! Crazy!!! Hahaha.

    We went back the hotel to have som down time and to get ready to go out today. It was good time to form more bounds with people that I wasn’t talking to normally before. When we got to the Mall of Asia I thought it would have been like crazy busy but it wasn’t m. New Years at Disney World was crazy than this. It was interesting. It was fun being able to spend New Years with new people and in a different country. But I miss my family a lot. I’m so used to spending New Years at home with the family and they going out New Year’s Day with the extend family. The firework so was beautiful too. It was a great day.

  2. Incredible. In what other ways can I describe such a perfect day other than saying incredible? I found so much happiness listening to the accomplishments of ANCOP and being reminded of the positive change that we’re truly here for. I disxoved so much joy amongst our group knowing that we were all here for the same reason- to be the change. Somewhere in our past, there was something so valuable that has occurred, which only encouraged us to be the leaders of our future. That itself speaks wider volumes than anything else. Also, New Years Eve in the Philippines is like New Years Eve in no other countries. The fireworks and crowd are absolutely phenomenal, and once again, the atmosphere itself is always filled with so much happiness ans excitement. Once again, I say thank you to God for another significantly beautiful day experienced during our trip. I am only hopeful for the upcoming days to be just as magnificent.

  3. It’s amazing to hear all that ANCOP as done for the locals! Their impact has definitely been profound, and it will have a major, positive impact on those who are sponsored! Education is sooo important. It looks like everyone had an awesome time celebrating NYE, although it must have been crazy celebrating it with millions of people! Hope everyone is continuing to have a great time, it’s been awesome tracking the progress of the trip and seeing the impact the donations and work has made on the local communities!

  4. It’s so hopeful to see that their are sponsors like ANCOP that care and want to make a difference. Those numbers are impressive already and we can only hope that in 2016 they will increase! I think the history behind the Philippines is fascinating and so is the architecture. Looking at the pictures make me want to try and pick mango’s too! New Years in the Philippines seems super fun and hectic all at the same time. You guys sure had a better new years than I did, nothing can beat a ferris wheel ride. I hope the student leaders and everyone who helps realize they’re all fireworks and give light to those around them!

  5. Wow the scenery is so fascinating. It`s a incredible trip. I feel very impressed. Hope you have wonderful days during the rest of the trip.

  6. Celebrating New Year’s Eve among a different culture in a different place must have been an interesting and fun experience. Not to mention how great of a job ANCOP has been doing for the children of the Philippines. Keep up the great work!

  7. It must have been an incredible experience. What the wealthy area of the Philippines has to offer compared tot he poor area really paints a picture on the different lifestyles the locals go through. I feel happy for the leaders, and I have to say, enjoy the experience, you’ve deserved it.

  8. The thoughts, I had while looking at the picture of Seph and Mr. Consul’s trying to pick mango is that, why couldn’t you climb up the tree? The feeling, I felt towards the Philippines, is upseting, they have kids that want to study but don’t have the money. With a 75% passing grade, it’s really amazing! For words of encouragement is to help, those in need.

  9. I thought that the fireworks were delightful! Everybody looks like they are having a great time. I thought that it was really kind of the student leaders to give their left over food to the homeless families. It was very kind of them. I thought that it was very cool that there was a big ferris wheel in the city. I wish Toronto had one!

  10. It’s great to hear that there is help like ANCOP. Their effect in the local community is great. ANCOP has done so much and allowed children and young adults expand their education by sponsoring them. It’s truly amazing that these kids are given a chance at a good life. My overall feelings are just happiness that people are getting help and their cries are not ignored. To all the leaders there: Happy New Year and keep up the wonderful work!

  11. It’s great to read about how ANCOP has had an positive impact in that community. Education is very important and it’s good to see that ANCOP is making a difference in the education of the locals. Their efforts will have a great impact. It’s nice to see that everyone is celebrating new years eve, they seem to be having an amazing time. It’s great to see the positive impact in the world that ANCOP has made and the positive difference that those on the trip are working hard at doing.

  12. Education is truly such an important part of life, and I believe that it is a basic human right, so I think that what ANCOP is doing is so amazing and beneficial! All of ANCOP’s generous contributions will open up so many doors in the lives of youth living in poverty, and that is so beautiful and priceless. Your day looks like it was so informative and fun! 🙂 OH MY GOODNESS that is such a fancy way to pick a mango ahaha! It is also so inspiring that, even on your break time, you didn’t cease to think of people who would benefit from your leftover food; that is true kindness and humility. Your New Years seems like it was so exciting memorable, and the fireworks and view from the Ferris wheel must have been breathtaking! Keep up the amazing work everyone; I can’t wait to read more about your trip in the next couple of days!

  13. Education is really important for the future of the country, so it is great to see that ANCOP is making a difference in the communities. It’s great that all their effort is actually making a difference and impacting their lives for the better. It seems New Years was spent really well for all of you and I hope you guys continue to have an awesome trip that can really make a difference.

  14. Today we visited the ANCOP office. One thing that I learned today was, the dedication that is required to work in charity. After the presentation, I took the time to discuss the impact that this organization had on their lives with numerous ANCOP members. To conclude, i want to be involved with charity for the years to come and i anticipate great thing for the ANCOP organization.

  15. Such a special NYE. How was the feeling to spend a NYE in Asian country with different culture and traditions? That’s good to hear ANCOP did amazing job to Philipines. This must be a memoriable trip for your guys

  16. This place was so nice! i really loved how there was so much green everywhere, really different from toronto in a good way!! It was also really funny to see Jaidan, Seph and Kalyna try to climb the walls of the fort. And new years was AWESOMEEEEE i haven’t seen so many amazing fireworks that are that nice in my life! they celebrate new years with a bang that’s for sure! it was a lot of fun, and i FINALLY GOT BUBBLE TEA!! i had been trying to buy it for the longest time. Had so much fun today.

    1. Today we visited ANCOP head office. It was amazing to hear all the dedication and hard work all the workers put in. All the volunteers is what makes the organization possible. Many of the volunteers have families of their own and yet they still find time to help, which is incredible! After dinner, Kalyna had a really amazing and thoughtful idea to give some of the leftover pizza to the homeless people across the street. It was amazing to see how they shared the pizza among each other even though there were so many of them. I wish we had more to give.

  17. We had some extra food from dinner and we decided to give some of the untouched pieces to the people living on the road outside of our motel. Even though we were giving away our leftovers, the fanily that we gave the food to (parents and a little girl), looked so grateful. They didn’t even have a place to sleep that would protect them and give them privacy, only sheets of cardboard on the side of the road. The image of that little girl’s smiling face will always be with me. Im just sorry that I couldn’t help them more.

  18. Those guys at ANCOP were pretty interesting to listen to. ANCOP isn’t like a huge corporation pouring millions of dollars at a problem. But rather a group of neighbors helping out their fellow neighbor ie: helping building houses to build a community. The people at ANCOP aren’t multi-millionaires, but rather just regular people who want to help their neighbors. It really shows that only hard work and determination can create change.

  19. Today we visited the ANCOP headquarters to give us a little back info on what we’re doing. They talked a lot about the small but important difference we’re each making. They said that often times volunteers would find something important within themselves. I was excited to get started. But by the time we finished sightseeing a bit and ordered pizza, it was time to go see the famed firework display an MOA. Our small group navigated through the streets and took a ride on the ferris wheel. Looking back, riding on the tippy top of the ferris wheel – it seemed like everyone were ants running about in their village. When we got off the ferris wheel, I saw for the first time in five days, cultures from all over the world. It was amazing to see how so many foreigners and locals could gather in one place so simultaneously to witness something maybe 20 minutes long. Then it started raining. I don’t remember the last time I embraced the rain as much as I did then. Maybe it was the heat, or the fact that no one else around me cared one bit but the rain made me feel like a kid again. And as the clock ticked to 12 on Veronica’s phone our group began counting down… then everyone around us followed along. There we were: in a different country, a different continent, surrounded by complete strangers and classmates we met only five months ago entering 2016. If you told me in August 2015 that I’d decide to take an impromptu trip to the Philippines with basically strangers to build houses, I’d tell you that lying isn’t good for you. With 2015 gone, all of us hugged and laughed and greeted each other Happy New Year in our wet clothes while we watched firework displays explode in every direction. As we followed Tito Bernie’s Canada Flag to navigate us back to the bus and sang the first songs of 2016, I couldn’t help but think ‘there’s no place I’d rather be’

  20. The thing that stood out to me today was when we gave our leftovers to the people living on the sidewalk across the street. When we gave the first family the little pizza that we had left, they tore off a tiny piece, then passed it to the next family. This happened all the way down the line until everyone had something to eat. I’m sure any of them could have eaten all of the leftovers and still been hungry, and this selflessness and community really impacted me.

  21. Going to the ANCOP office to hear from some of the people in charge was really educating, their standards are so high. The passing grade for a student is 75%, meanwhile in Canada it’s 50%, the students here work so hard. It takes $38 a month to sponsor a child, I’m so inspired by everything I’ve seen I can’t wait to sponsor someone and help them get an education. I was kind of sad we weren’t going to see any villages today but at least we went across the street to give the families the left over pizza we had. They continuously surprise me with their generosity, the first family we gave the pizza to was a family of three. At first I thought they thought we were giving them the whole box but after I tried to explain to them to pass it on they took not even a slice, a third of a slice and continued to pass it on to the other hungry families on that street. Their sense of community is something I wish that we had in Toronto.

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